Lone Rock turned Saturday’s $400,000 Brooklyn S. (G2) into a solo procession with an 11 1/4-length triumph over one lap of Belmont Park’s 1 1/2-mile oval.
Tracking in second as Musical Heart cut out the pace, Lone Rock inherited the lead from that tiring rival approaching the quarter pole. Finally asked for run by jockey Ramon Vasquez at the top of the stretch, Lone Rock responded emphatically, turning away Tizamagician and Moretti and winning for fun.
“When I saw the other horse that has a lot of speed (Tizamagician) stumble out of the gate, I just put my horse in the best position that I could,” Vazquez said. “I just waited until the end to ask my horse and you can see what happened.”
Owned by Flying P Stable and trained by Robertino Diodoro, Lone Rock finished up in 2:28.97 over a track recently upgraded to fast. He paid $8.90. Tizamagician, favored at 2.65-1, finished a length of Moretti, who had 3 3/4 lengths on Campaign. Rounding out the order of finish were You’re to Blame, Ry’s the Guy, Ajaaweed, Rocketry, and Musical Heart.
This was the third career stakes win for the six-year-old Lone Rock, whom Flying P and Diodoro claimed for $40,000 at Saratoga last summer. Losing the horse via the claim box for the same price following a win at Keeneland in October, connections re-claimed the gelding for $40,000 at Churchill Downs in late November.
Lone Rock has posted six wins in seven starts since the aforementioned victory at Keeneland, the only setback being a neck loss in the 1 1/2-mile Temperence Hill S. at Oaklawn in March. Lone Rock preceded this win with a 3 3/4-length triumph in the April 27 Isaac Murphy Marathon at Churchill over 12 furlongs, and also captured the Jeffrey Hawk Memorial at Remington Park earlier in his career. His record now stands at 33-11-3-2, $748,921.
“He was meant to be a good horse. He’s a horse that is just getting better,” Diodoro said. “We just have to keep him healthy and happy as long as we can. He loves his job. When you have a horse trying to run these distances, you need one who loves to train, and he definitely enjoys training.”
Bred in Kentucky by Town & Country Horse Farm and Pollock Farms, Lone Rock is by Majestic Warrior and out of the Grade 3-placed Ruby Lips, a Hard Spun half-sister to multiple stakes winner Like a Gem. The latter is the dam of multiple Grade 1 heroine Hard Not to Like.